Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Never a Dull Moment

But that's my own damn fault. I need to sit down and have a little conversation with myself: "Rod, you're retired now. Chill." But I continue to make myself busy. For example:

Last night, 2 summer classes at Casa de la Cultura, from 5-8 p.m. This morning, got up early, skipped breakfast and went to the medical laboratory for some blood work ordered by my semiannual cholesterol screen. Understand I don't much like to have my blood drawn. I call the folks who do it "vampires." Maybe because I once fainted while having it done. But they were nice today. I only waited about 5 minutes. The whole thing took maybe 10 minutes, and I was done. Then I stopped at a sandwich joint on the way home because I was ravenous, not having eaten before the cholesterol test.

I came back home, worked on the computer, and went back out at 10:45 to head up to the gringo library. Every morning at 11, I've got students I'm tutoring. Now it's 2. I've created a monster. If someone expresses the desire to learn English, I feel it's my duty as a former ESL instructor to teach them. Plus, it's fun. They help me with Spanish, I give them some practice in English. After our hour and a half, I spent some time chatting with my new buddies who hang out daily at the library. Two hundred years ago that would have been called a "salon." Interesting people; interesting, intelligent conversation.

Then I excused myself at 1 p.m. to dash around the corner to my massage guy. I do this every Wednesday. At $15 USD for an hour, it's a little treat I can afford weekly. Plus I'm getting to know "Beto," the massage therapist. He's a good guy. Afterwards, I wandered down to the town square (zocalo), where I ran into Luis, an American guy I know. He's a friend of a friend of mine from Chicago. Then I looked in at all the cafes ringing the zocalo, under the arches (portales), trying to decide which restaurant to have lunch at. At TerraNova, I ran into another new American friend and joined him at his table for lunch. Unfortunately for our fascinating political discussion, I had to rush off at 3:30 to go home and pick up materials for my class that I'm teaching at 4 p.m. I made it just in time. Today, we had 2 student teaching visitors who observed the class. That always means you have to prepare a bit more and be a bit more "on" if you're being evaluated. But we had a good class. It's only 3 students, but I'm thankful they are involved and participate fully in the class. That went on 'til 6p.m.

Then, I went back to the laboratory to pick up my test results. When was the last time you got same-day turnaround on lab tests in the U.S.? (answer=never). It was then about 6:30. I thought, "Wow, you can just make the baseball game at 7 p.m. over at Vacsoncelos Stadium." Then I realized I've been sick......and I'm tired. It was a full day, almost 11 hours. For an old fart, that's enough. I came home instead of going to the ballgame (even though it's a beautiful night to be outdoors). I stopped at a French pastry shop on the way home. A treat for being brave and having my blood drawn.